And the Lord's anger was kindled against Israel, and he made them wander in the wilderness for forty years, until all the generation that had done evil in the sight of the Lord had disappeared.
And now you, a brood of sinners, have risen in place of your fathers, to increase the Lord's fierce anger against Israel!
If you turn away from following him, he will again abandon them in the wilderness; and you will destroy all this people."
Then they came up to him and said, "We will build sheepfolds here for our flocks, and towns for our little ones,
but we will take up arms as a vanguard a before the Israelites, until we have brought them to their place. Meanwhile our little ones will stay in the fortified towns because of the inhabitants of the land.
We will not return to our homes until all the Israelites have obtained their inheritance.
We will not inherit with them on the other side of the Jordan and beyond, because our inheritance has come to us on this side of the Jordan to the east."
So Moses said to them, "If you do this—if you take up arms to go before the Lord for the war,
and all those of you who bear arms cross the Jordan before the Lord, until he has driven out his enemies from before him
and the land is subdued before the Lord—then after that you may return and be free of obligation to the Lord and to Israel, and this land shall be your possession before the Lord.
But if you do not do this, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)